Having missed out on the Killdeer by a day we spent time around Sandwick on Saturday and managed to record the following:
Greylag (166) Golden Plover (56) Ringed Plover (62) Turnstone (47) Redshank (6) Curlew (4) Snipe (12), Jack snipe (1), Purple Sandpiper (6) Oystercatcher (2) Lapwing (18) Meadow pipit (26) Starling (50) House Sparrow (40+) Blackbird (30+ ) Redwing (20+) Fieldfare (4) Rock Pipit (12) Mallard (6) Robin (2) Long Tailed Duck (6) Shag (18) Eider (20) Rock Dove (16) Herring Gull (12) Gt BB (8) Common Gull (3) Fulmar (30) Black Guillemot (6) Twite (12) Raven (4) Hoddie (12)
On the Sunday we also managed to see Dolphin (5) although at a distance, we saw them jumping out of the water and moving very fast out of the bay, couldn't identify the species at that range. The usual Porpoise (10) also seen in the bay.
Also the Selkies resting on the jetty. Further north people saw Humpback and Killer Whales
On the Sunday the weather was equally good so we went south to Grutness where Long Tailed Duck (6) Black Guillemot (4) Shag (8) Mallard (6) Teal (4) Sanderling (22) Turnstone (8) Ringed Plover (2) Gt BB, Herring Gull, Fulmar, Rock pipit, Meadow pipit all present but no unusual species.
Its interesting that we are finding more and more Blackbird's with white feathers in Shetland, this one at Sandlodge. Perhaps in Blackbirds the white feather show more against their normally black/ brown colouring.
This condition is known as Albinism and is commoner than first thought, it is usually inherited but the amount of white can vary considerably. It normally the male Blackbird that are affected and only occasionally females.
Other birds such as House Sparrow are also affected, but a photo appeared on facebook the other day of an almost white Water Rail found in the north mainland, a very striking bird.
I walked round St Ninian's Isle the other day in superb weather, i was photographing Landscapes so no photos but did come across the following:
SE Owl, Snow Bunting, Jack Snipe (2) Common Snipe (12) Gt Northern Diver (3) Long Tailed Duck (8) Rock Pipit (15) Gt BB Gull (49) Fulmar, Kittiwake, Common Gull, Wren, Sanderling, Turnstone, Ringed Plover, Curlew, Oystercatcher, Starling, Redshank, Whooper Swan (3 Over) Lapwing, Hoodie, Raven, Twite, Blackbird, Herring Gull, Meadow Pipit, Black Guillemot, Shag
Just a few days ago the Killdeer re-appeared in the same field as before so hope to see the bird this weekend.
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